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Research Associate II - Social Work Research & Public Service

University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN
Closing date
Aug 6, 2022

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Research Associate II - Social Work Research & Public Service

Regular, Full-time, Market Range 11

The person in this position will collaborate with members of SWORPS' Program and Training Evaluation unit on the design and implementation of externally funded projects. This position requires in-state travel.


Design Research and Evaluation Projects

* Develop and manage evaluation plans.
* Gather, review, and synthesize relevant theoretical and applied research literature.
* Perform literature reviews.
* Select appropriate data collection methods and develop data collection instruments.
* Supervise graduate level interns and junior staff.
* Work with Associate Director for Program and Training Evaluation unit and SWORPS' fiscal unit to develop project budgets and timelines.

Lead Implementation of Sponsored Research Projects

* Allocated time between concurrent sponsored research projects and ensuring that deliverables are completed within specified time frames.
* Collect data through observations, interviews, focus groups, surveys, and review of administrative data.
* Use critical thinking and evaluation expertise to synthesize and analyze qualitative and quantitative data.
* Coordinate with internal publications staff to produce work products.
* Develop detailed reports tailored to clients' needs using effective data communication techniques (tables, graphs, etc.)
* Make recommendations to external stakeholders regarding program implementation and areas for further research and evaluation.
* Present findings to project sponsors tailoring to needs of different audiences (leadership, frontline staff, etc.); support use of findings for continuous program improvement and program sustainability.
* Present findings in educational and professional forums.

Data Management and Analysis

* Prepare data for analyses and maintain data sets for evaluation projects.
* Merge data from different sources and perform simple database tasks.
* Develop a data analysis plan that clearly and succinctly communicates advanced statistical analysis needs to internal statistician.
* Interpret results of statistical analysis and communicate them using clear figures, tables, maps, and text.
* Liaison with sponsor to ensure data quality and completeness.
* Work with internal software designers to determine database specifications and reporting needs.

Perform other duties as assigned including providing internal service by serving on committees or working groups that are related to the mission of SWORPS and the College of Social Work at large and aiding in identification and development of new opportunities for externally-funded projects.


EDUCATION: Applicant must hold a Master's Degree in Program Evaluation, Public Health, Public Administration, Social Work, or related field. Degree in Public Health preferred.

EXPERIENCE: 3 years of work experience in social science research/program evaluation experience required; experience working 1 or more of these years with federal and state- funded projects preferred.

WORK SCHEDULE: This position may occasionally have weekend work hours and will require some overnight travel depending on assigned project needs.


* Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
* Knowledge of quantitative and qualitative research and evaluation methods.
* Demonstrated skill in collecting and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data.
* Ability and flexibility to work in highly collaborative, fast moving environment.
* Ability to interpret statistical output and communicate results in an easily understood form.
* Ability to spot common problems in study design, instrument design, and statistical analysis.
* Fluent in use of at least one statistical analysis software package such as SPSS, R, SAS, etc. (Preferred).

Application Process: The Knoxville campus of the University of Tennessee is seeking candidates who have the ability to contribute in meaningful ways to the diversity and intercultural goals of the University. Screening of applicants will begin immediately and will continue until the position has been filled.

Interested individuals should provide a cover letter addressing professional experience relevant to each required minimum qualification, a resume, and complete contact information for 3 professional references.
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